Wednesday, February 28, 2007

A Handbag to Hug

I think for my 50th birthday I'm going to get myself a really good handbag...maybe instead of the Armani suit...or maybe I'll just get both.

When I was at the salon a few weeks ago getting my hair dyed and highlighted, I overheard two women talking about the one woman's new handbag. The woman was eyeing the other woman's Louis Vuitton handbag..."don't you absolutely love that bag?"...and the woman replied..."It is just so incredible...I'm so glad I bought this...I'll keep it forever!"

I've never kept a handbag forever...nor have I loved my handbag like it was a human being. I really thought this woman was going to hug her Louis Vuitton bag. But I guess a real Louis Vuitton bag costs a fortune... so if I ever bought one(not that I'm going to, because I really don't like you never know if they are real or a good fake) I'd have to love it and hug it too.

Maybe for my birthday I'll buy a Chanel bag. They are so classic. I remember when I was growing up in the 60's my mom's best friend Rancie had a black patent leather Chanel bag. Rancie always drank Tab...the kind in the bottle sweetened with saccharin...I didn't like the Tab whenever she offered it to me, which was often...but I liked Rancie's Chanel bag...unfortunately she never offered me the Chanel bag. If I was older at the time I might have remembered to tell her to put it in her will for me.

I'm not one who changes their handbag every's too much work. I buy a bag that I like and use it for a long time, although not forever. My handbags tend to wear out because I do use them every day. I like bags to have an inside zipper and an outside zipper, an outside compartment for my keys, an inside compartment for my phone, enough space for my wallet...(wallets could be a whole other subject - I'm very particular about wallets too.) I need a bag that is big enough for all my stuff prescription sunglasses, makeup bag...must have my lipstick, lip-liner, comb, another lipstick, lip gloss, compact, mirror for when I don't use the compact...maybe I should cut down on my makeup bag and I won't need such a big handbag!

Last year I bought a great Hype bag. I did really like that bag. When I saw it I knew it would be mine one day. It is bronze and has all the special features I mentioned above. So far, I have not found another bag like my great Hype bag...and it is getting quite old.

Instead of buying a new handbag (or before I do) I could rent a handbag from Talk about women who love their bags! I never thought about renting a handbag, but they do have some neat handbags on the site.

Or, maybe instead of buying a new handbag for my 50th birthday, I'll take myself on a vacation to Amsterdam to see the collection of 3,500 handbags at the Museum of Bags and Purses. I never even knew it existed until I read about it this weekend in the New York Times Style section. You can check it out at ...of course the site is written in another language... just fascinating.

Since I have quite a few months left until I turn 50... I have lots of time left to hunt for that perfect handbag...the handbag that will last forever....and one to hug.


Monday, February 26, 2007

Hands Worth Shaking

Some say that your hands tell your age. I'm starting to have more wrinkles on my hands and my skin is thinning so my veins protrude more. My skin and nails are constantly dry, especially during the winter. I cream them all the time. And I usually polish my nails because when I don't polish them they always tend to split or break. Plus, they look ugly when I don't polish them

I like to go to the nail salon. The parrafin treatments are especially divine. Your hands come out like silk. I've thought about buying one of those at-home parrafin machines and doing my own parrafin treatments. I should go to the nail salon more...I just don't have time...or I forget to make an appointment. I'll go four months without a professional manicure, even though I say I'll make an appointment each week...and then I get busy. Should I exercise OR go to get my nails done? Exercising seems to take preference these days.

So, I try to do my nails once a week and cream my hands two to three times a day.

Speaking of hands and nails...listen to this...I must tell you what happened to me this weekend when I went into Bath & Body Works. They seem to send me more coupons lately for free stuff. This time I took them up on their offer. You had to buy at least $10 of stuff and you could get a free sample from their new True Blue Spa collection.

As usual, I ended up spending more than $10...they saw me coming! But, when it came to pick out the free gift from the True Blue Spa collection...I couldn't decide what to get. The saleswoman showed me everything...the hand gloves, the hand cream, the intense cuticle cream, etc. Then she showed me the "Just A Minute" 60-Second Manicure Scrub. She said that this product was terrific. I read the blurb on the package - it said: This sugar-based exfoliating treatment makes quick work of dull, dry skin and ragged cuticles to give even the most mani-deprived hands a taste of soft, smooth spa-manicure perfection - in just one minute. Say no more...I was sold the minute I read the magic words "mani-deprived," "just one minute." Heaven to my ears..and my hands. Not only was I sold, I also bought their new nail buffer, which looked just like a real salon exciting!

I rushed home and opened up the "Just A Minute" 60-Second Manicure Scrub and had to try it out. I took my nail polish off, ran the water in the sink, and scrubbed away all that dry skin and ragged cuticles. I had my digital watch on my wrist, so at exactly one minute on the clock, I rinsed off the scrub. Voila, my cuticles looked great...and my skin was pretty soft...just like a real salon manicure.

I put on my Bath & Body Works hand cream...buffed up my nails with my new buffer...then polished them with my favorite OPI nailpolish. Result: I think my hands will look 29 forever...well, maybe 39...definitely not 49!

I'll shake to that. Now let's hope they don't discontinue this wonderful product anytime soon.


Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Oscars - Best Weekend of the Year

It's Oscar weekend. While my husband and son had their Superbowl weekend earlier this month...Oscar weekend is MY of the best of the year. No matter how old I am, I'll always love Oscar weekend...the gowns and dresses and jewelry...the Barbara Walter's special...the red carpet...and of course, the actual awards ceremony. I watch it all.

I just heard that the E channel will start the red carpet at 6:00 pm on Sunday. I guess I will have to have an early dinner. And, I'll have to polish my nails during the afternoon, since I will not be able to polish them during my regular Sunday night at 7:30 pm nail polishing time. Need to stay totally focused on the looking down to polish my nails or I might miss an important dress!

It's nice to see those 50+ women up on the Best Actress list. I just adore Meryl Streep, She was terrific in The Devil Wears Prada...what incredible the saying goes..."to die for." Although, I'm sure Helen Mirren is likely to win. I did see The Queen...I took my mom to see The Queen. While I thought Helen Mirren was excellent at playing The Queen, I thought the storyline could have been told in about 15 minutes...not two hours. As for The Queen's wardrobe...I won't talk about that. In fact, I think I dozed off during the movie...maybe I missed something good...maybe I should see it again when it comes out on DVD.

Each year I try to see all the nominated movies prior to the Oscars. I've seen quite a few this year...but didn't make it to all on the list. Tonight, I'm going to try to have a movie marathon and see The Departed and maybe try to catch Babel too. I still won't accomplish seeing all the nominated movies...maybe next year.

Maybe next year for my 50th birthday I'll have an Oscar party. That would be fun. I'll invite all my female friends and we can have a chick flick movie marathon. We'll watch all my favorite chick flicks, like:

- Pretty Woman (Julia Roberts and Richard Gere at their best)
- Roman Holiday(since I'm an Audrey Hepburn fan...and a Gregory Peck fan)
- Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (since I'm also a Katherine Hepburn fan)
- Sweet Home Alabama (a sappy romance movie with Reese Witherspoon and some very cute guys)
- Annie Hall (Diane Keaton and Woody Allen are a perfect team...and this is such a reminds me of when I was in my twenties and always dressed like Annie Hall)
- The Way We Were (adore Robert Redford and always makes me cry)

I'll have to keep thinking of other chick-flicks that I've enjoyed during the past years and add them to the list...that's if I can still remember them all. For those of you who are reading...please let me know your favorite chick-flicks...maybe it will prompt my memory.

This is actually a doubly good weekend...not only is it Oscar weekend, but it's also the New York Times Spring Fashion Magazine weekend in the Sunday paper...and I get that part of the paper on Saturday. This is great. Now I can read the Fashion Magazine on Saturday evening instead of during my usual Sunday night New York Times reading time which is after my usual nail polishing time.

Life couldn't be better!


Tuesday, February 20, 2007

As Time Goes By

I'm traveling this week. Whenever I travel I bring along my handy Timex Expedition watch. I love this watch because it lights up, so I can see the time when I wake up in the middle of the night. I just push the little button and I know exactly what time it is...and how much sleep I'm missing. This is especially useful, since when I take off my eye glasses I cannot see the alarm clock. I wish hotels would accommodate people like me and put alarm clocks on both sides of the bed. I always seem to sleep on the side that is not next to the alarm clock.

My old Timex Expedition watch up and died on me a few weeks I bought a new one. It was digital...not like my old Timex Expedition watch which had a regular face with a dial you could easily adjust. It wasn't until I arrived on the other side of the country and put on my watch that I realized the time was wrong. Being the technologically illiterate person that I am I forgot to bring the instructions. My son had set my new digital watch when I originally bought it, so I thought everything would be fine.

It was 11 pm MT. I was determined to change the time on this digital watch...after all, I'm not 50 yet. At 49 I should be able to change the time on a digital watch. How hard could it be? Ha! I pushed every button...I got the laps moving (guess I should have gone running)...I got the alarm turned on (to the wrong time, but it never went off)...I moved the hours, the minutes, and the seconds (just not all synchronized together)...after an hour had gone by I decided the effort was futile.

I put the watch back in my suitcase...washed my face...brushed my teeth...put on my Estee Lauder cream...went to bed...and waited for my wake up call.

Who needs to keep track of time anyway?


Sunday, February 18, 2007

Snow on My Eyebrows

Well, I just woke up this morning and found another white hair peeking out from one of my eyebrows. What should I do?

Do I:
a) pluck it out and start to leave an empty space
b) leave it alone and look like there is a white spec on my eyebrow
c) dye my eyebrows, that is probably not easy to do...will have to ask my colorist the next time I see him

This is not the first white eyebrow hair I've found and I don't like it.

When I was a young girl, I remember my Aunt Dorothy. She didn't have any eyebrows. I always wondered why she had a fake line above her eyes where her eyebrows belonged. She would apply her fake eyebrows with a brown eyebrow pencil. My mom said my Aunt Dorothy plucked her eyebrows too much. I wonder if she had too many white hairs in her eyebrows?

InStyle magazine just had an article in their February issue about Brow Gurus...wonder what the Brow Gurus in NYC would say about this situation? I may have to read up on eyebrow tips on They seemed to have a lot of tips on the subject.

Guess I'll see what develops during the next few least there are no white hairs on top of my least not for now.


Friday, February 16, 2007

Remembering A Mentor

I said I would capture my ups and my downs this year. I had a downer this week when a friend called to say that an old friend and former colleague had passed away. Kit was one of my mentors when I was just starting out in my career more than 20 years ago. She was such a creative person...she cared deeply about her work and even more about the people she worked with - whether they were her colleagues in the office or the editors and reporters she served as a public relations professional. She was always friendly and asked about my children and my husband...with geniune interest...not just for the asking. She complimented me when I did good work. And every year, even after we stopped working together, I always knew there would be a holiday card in the mail from Kit.

As I get older, I think about how lucky I was to have had a mentor like Kit when I was in my 20's. Now it's my turn to be the share the wisdom I have learned over the step back and stop the treadmill I'm on...and give back to those younger than me (much younger than me) who are starting out in the business world. It's not easy transitioning into such a role. Does that mean I'm now all grown up??? Even at 49, I think there's a little Peter Pan in me...never wanting to grow up. Maybe that's why I'm having such a tough time transitioning into this mentor role.

When I was younger, I don't think I realized how much I learned from people like Kit and the other talented women who mentored me...I didn't realize the things they said...the questions they asked...the encouragement they provided...impacted my career and even more so the person I would become. I was so busy moving ahead, that I just never really took time to stop and think about all the great things they taught me.

So, as I reflect, I want to say thank you to Kit...while I may not get a holiday card from you this December...memories will remain. I hope I can be as great a mentor to others as you were to me.


Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Say You Love Me

Since it is Valentine's Day and I'm stuck inside because of the icy weather, I guess the flower delivery man could not deliver my dozens of roses. And the Tiffany jewelry shipment is delayed. At this point, I'd be happy with a single red rose from WaWa.

My husband does not celebrate Valentine's Day. The last time he gave me a Valentine present was 24 years ago when we were dating. It was a gold heart necklace. I remember it vividly when he handed me the red box. How romantic! I need to remind him that it's still okay to be romantic...I'm still open to the Valentine gifting thing...will have to leave some hints next year, especially since it will be right after my 50th birthday.

My husband likes war movies and I'm into romantic chick-flicks. In fact, we've even been known to go to the movies at the same time, but see different movies. It's our version of the double feature. Wonder if other couples practice this?

Since it is Valentine's Day, I think I'll watch my absolutely favorite movie of all time...Pretty Woman with Richard Gere (at his all time best) and Julia Roberts (what woman would not want to be given carte blanche to buy whatever clothes she wanted on Rodeo Drive and then go out with Richard Gere?) Even Roy Orbison's song at the end of the movie is fabulous. It is one of the only movies I have ever owned...however, after more than 10 years of constant usage, the VHS tape is pretty worn out. I may have to buy a new DVD copy for myself sometime soon.

My other Valentine tradition is handing out Hershey Kisses. This year, the Hershey company went all out and had different varieties...dark chocolate, strawberry, caramel...I bought them all. Since I did't go to work today, I now have three bags of Hershey Kisses sitting in my briefcase. That's pretty dangerous for me.

Guess I'll go watch Pretty some Hershey Kisses...and wait for Valentine's Day 2008. I may just buy a Tiffany gift for myself in 2008...I'll be 50 and I deserve it!



Monday, February 12, 2007

Spring Is In The Air

I get so excited when all the spring issues of my favorite magazines arrive in the mail..InStyle, Lucky, Vogue. This weekend I couldn't even wait for their arrivals. On Saturday, despite the frigid temperatures and impending snowstorm, I went out and bought myself some new spring clothes. I bought a beige suit and a black and white houndstooth knee length jacket. Now, I can't wait for spring to arrive so I can wear my new clothes.

As you know, the groundhog did not see his shadow, which means spring will be here sooner than we I better be ready! (Always rationalizing when I make a purchase.)

Every year, I say I have enough clothes for the season, but I always need some new ones. Speaking of styles changing...Neiman Marcus had a cute advertisement in the paper this weekend with "Ten MUST-HAVES For the Season." Since this is the last spring I will be 40+, I may just have to purchase all 10. Here goes:

1. Something Silver (I don't wear a whole lot of silver, gold is really my color, but I'll see what I can do.)
2. Flat Shoes (yeah, I love flats. So glad they are a must have for spring 2007)
3. Eyelet (pretty and feminine, I haven't had anything eyelet since I was in grade school.)
4. Cropped Jacket (these short jackets look better on pear shaped, short people like me...more good news.)
5. Above-the-Knee Hemlines (did anyone tell them this is not appropriate for 49 year old women?)
6. Dresses (I like dresses, only can never find any dresses that fit me...will have to look harder this season.)
7. Patent (I love, love, love, black patent leather - shoes, belts, bags - you name it. I wish I had saved my black patent leather wide belt from about 10 years ago. I always tell myself NOT to through out any accessories because the fashion cycle repeats itself. Did I listen...noooooo. Now I'll just have to buy a new one.)
8. Wide Belts (Not sure these will look good on a pear shape either...but will try one on next time I'm shopping)
9. Delicate Blouses (Hum, must mean pretty fabrics, feminine, might have to get one of these too.)
10. Statement Rings (I have small, thin fingers...don't think I will want a big ring on my finger.)

Let's see...out of the 10 MUST HAVES...I can wear about FIVE maybe SIX. And I don't see any houndstooth or beige suits listed. Maybe I will have to go return them...serves me right for not first reading my fashion mags or listening to Neiman Marcus.

On second thought, at this age, I think I'm entitled to make my own fashion statement. Houndstooth it is, and the beige suit...I think I'll keep it.


Sunday, February 11, 2007

A Night At the Grammys

Another awards night. I think I will always enjoy the awards shows, whether I'm 20, 30, 40 or even 50+. I just love all the hoopla and excitement of the evening events. Also, love to see what everyone is wearing.

In honor of the grammys, I thought I'd share a word or two about all the baby boomer female musicians that I admire: Madonna, Cher, Tina Turner, and Aretha Franklin. These are a few that I have on my IPod. The ones that keep me jazzed while I'm on the treadmill or keep me pumped up while I'm lifting my weights. I admire these talented women because each in their own way has been reinventing herself and is still as vibrant an entertainer as when she was younger.

* Madonna - Sorry, Like A Prayer, Holiday, as well as her newer song Hung Up
* Cher - Believe, If I Could Turn Back Time, All or Nothing, and A Different Kind of Love Song
* Tina Turner - I Don't Want to Loose You, The Best,Let's Stay Together
* Aretha Franklin - Respect

Of course, I also stay hip with some of the newer female singers - Avril Lavigne, Beyonce, Gwen Stefani,Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson, Natasha Bedingfield, Shakira, and Vanessa Carlton. My kids keep me up-to-date on all the top songs and new musicians that are popular. I usually like the songs they suggest, but can never remember who sings them. And, while I have an IPod, which I do love, I still do not know how to upload my songs from iTunes. I also don't know how to program my radio stations in my car. Since both my kids drive my car, they have programmed all their favorite I get to hear what the new beats are.

Okay...Tony Bennett and Stevie Wonder just won the first Grammy award...guess you can stay vibrant forever and ever! He said he sang the same song when he was 17 and now he is singing it in a whole new way...


Friday, February 9, 2007

The Best is Yet to Come

I had a wonderful lunch date today with two old friends. It's amazing when I think back to how we met almost 20 years ago. We not only worked together, but we had kids at the same time. We were working moms then and still are today. We spent a bit of time reminiscing about the days when we carried diaper bags and spent more time focused on our children. Each of us has a girl and a boy, so we were comparing notes...what are they doing now, how have they grown, when will the youngest be ready for college, when will we each be empty-nesters?

As we reminisced, our talk turned to the future. One friend turned 50 a few years ago, the other is my age and will be turning 50 in the coming year. We talked about our upcoming trips to was going to Prague, Budapest and Vienna...and about my trip to Rome. We chatted about how we were going to maybe look at new careers after we retire. What would retirement look like? We all agreed there would be more time to do more traveling. We thought we each would still want to do some type of work, however exactly what that work would be was totally up to us. How empowering! Whatever the work, there definitely would be less hours devoted to work and more time devoted to do the other things in life that we always wanted to do but never had the time to do when we were younger. One friend even talked about taking off for a month to go live in another country and experience another culture. How exciting!

When I returned to work after our lunch I was inspired. I realized that getting older had its benefits. I started to think about all the things I wanted to do when I retire (yes, I know it is way off and that I'm not even 50 yet), but I have plenty of time to plan. I'll be able to garden again (hopefully I can bend over on my knees), start cooking and baking again (even if I have to watch my weight), start sewing (if I can see the needle hole to thread), entertain more (I'll have more time to invite all my other retired friends over to my house), and have more time to read all the books I have on my "books to read when I retire list."

Yes, while I've had a good life so far, there are so many more great things I want to do...and really, the best is yet to come!


Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Weighing In

Just yesterday I went to my gynecologist for a follow up appointment. When I arrived, prior to seeing my doctor, the nurse asked me to step on the scale. "What, you want me to get on the scale," I said to the nurse. "No one told me I was going to have to do that this evening, especially when I have all my clothes on and boots too."

Usually when I know I am going to have to weigh in, I wear appropriate "weigh in" clothing - no jacket (or a jacket that can easily be removed, thin wool pants (in the winter) or light-weight linen (in the summer), and absolutely no boots. Of course, this time, since I didn't know I would be weighing in, I was wearing exactly the opposite of what I should be wearing. Not a good weigh in. I could not take off my boots, but I was able to slip off my jacket. I couldn't take off my belt either. And it was evening, so add on the pounds from the day, luckily I had not had dinner yet. There also was the jewelry - a necklace, bracelet, and earrings. No wonder I weighed 5 pounds more than my bathroom scale displayed earlier that morning!

About a year ago, I bought myself a new bathroom scale. While I know Weight Watchers would not approve, I do weigh myself every morning. I'm sure I'm typical of women my age and other ages maybe too. I love my is digital with big numbers so I can see the exact weight without wearing my glasses. I always weigh myself before I get in the extra clothing pounds for's au-natural. And if I don't like what I weigh the first time...I'll get off and step on the scale again...just to make sure...sometimes if it is different the second time around...I'll make a third step up...the third time always tells the truth. This scale was a good investment....some mornings it is almost like a stepper machine. It gets more use than my reclining bicycle that I spent so much money on.

I probably should not be so obsessed with weighing myself everyday...but over the years it has become a habit. Usually, Monday's are not good days...I tend to pig out on the weekend. Then I spend the rest of the week trying to lose the pounds I gained so I can gain them back all over again. Sometimes if I have a good Monday, I'll let myself have peanut butter on waffles for breakfast. If not it's another Kashi Heart to Heart cereal day to start off the week...but I do cheat with a little Captain Crunch to top it is Monday after all.

I'd likely be a terrible dieter...better keep exercising!


Saturday, February 3, 2007

Let's Be Brief

When you are approaching 50 and your body is changing into a pear, it is a challenge to find the perfect brief. I don't know about you, but I cannot wear those thongs...not sure how any woman any age wears those things. They must be sooooo uncomfortable.

A few years ago, I finally found a perfect low-rise brief that fit me and then they discontinued the style. Why do manufacturers have to change styles of underwear every few months? Don't they know that when women find an undergarment they would be nice if they could continue to buy it???

I always think of Bridget Jones Diary when I think of briefs. Remember when she wore those huge pantaloons and Hugh Grant made a joke about them?

Well, I was very happy the other day when I went hunting through the racks in Macy's intimates department and found that Warner brought back my favorite style....or should I say it was pretty close to the original. They had to go add a few features. Now they call it "The End" with a tagline "Give Your Butt A Boost." There's an additional seam up the center of the underwear to enhance your shape. Whatever it is, I am just so happy that my microfiber brief is back on the rack.

Do you know that in August there is actually a National Underwear Day? It's sponsored by, a leading retailer of men’s and women’s underwear. I think next time Warner takes away my favorite underwear, I'm going to complain on National Underwear Day! According to the press release, it says National Underwear Day is an event where the latest trends in underwear receive more exposure—literally.

Interestingly, most of the underwear sold today is dramatically lower on the hips with an increasing number of women opting for seamless intimate apparel. According to data from 125,000 customers, below is a breakdown of women's underwear style preferences:

Bikini briefs – 37%
Briefs – 23%
Thongs – 19%
Boy shorts – 17%
Other – 4%

Now that I have my underwear back, I can start hunting for a pair of jeans that fit me.

Briefly Yours,


Thursday, February 1, 2007

Is Exercising Really A Hobby?

I try to exercise at least twice a week and once on the weekend. Well, maybe that is stretching the truth a bit. Oftentimes in the winter, I end up as a weekend athlete. I get home late and always seem to come up with a reason why I cannot go to the gym...too cold...too tired...too much work to do...yada, yada,yada. I say that exercising is one of my hobbies, but the more I think about it, I don't think it is really a hobby. A hobby is something you really enjoy doing. I think exercising is more of a stress releaser, but most of all it helps me maintain my weight.

I've been doing circuit weight training for the past 8 years. My goodness, I cannot believe it's been 8 years that I've been doing the same thing. It's boring, but I do find it works for me. I build muscle and my clothes seem to fit me better...that is until I turned 49 and it all went downhill or should I say "down to the hips." I also use a reclining bicycle. I bought a reclining bicycle several years ago...put it in my bedroom so I would use it more frequently. I had big plans for that bicycle when I first bought it. I was going to wake up 30 minutes earlier each weekday and take a ride as part of my morning routine. Have I done it...nooooooooo! I get up at 5:30 am as it is...5:00 am is just too early for me . Plus, after all these years I've finally resigned myself to the fact that I am not a morning exercise person, except late mornings...and only on Sundays. I've also started using the treadmill at the gym. I walk fast and it seems to work on the hips.

One of these days I also want to try the eliptical machine that everyone at the gym is using. I tried it once and only lasted about 5 minutes...just could not get the arms and legs moving in unison.

Enough about my exercise routine...if anyone has ideas on how to make it more fun or more worthwhile...let me know.